The next meeting of the Hastings & Rye Palestine Solidarity Campaign (HRPSC) is tackling the issue of censorship and free speech head-on with a Zoom talk titled: Why Can’t We Talk About Palestine? They will be joined by award-winning, Nazareth-based journalist, Jonathan Cook, and investigative reporter, Asa Winstanley, of The Electronic Intifada on 24th February at 7pm. It’s free and open to all, though registration is essential. It comes hot on the heels of a successful meeting in January when the group hosted a discussion with renowned Israeli historian, Ilan Pappé, and Palestinian academic and author, Ghada Karmi, Expulsion without Return? The Palestinian Experience, now available on YouTube.

Jonathan Cook

HRPSC Chair, Katy Colley, says: “We had an extraordinary response to our meeting with Ghada and Ilan. People really enjoyed the combination of historical fact with lived experience, and Ghada spoke very movingly about her personal journey from Jerusalem to Golders Green in North London.”

She went on to talk about the huge amount of support and sympathy that is currently felt for the plight of the Palestinians: “The recent report by Israeli human rights charity, B’Tselem, naming Israel as an apartheid state, along with exclusion of Palestinians in Israel’s Covid vaccination programme, certainly seem to have had an effect on public consciousness.”

Katy also spoke about the difficulty of being a supporter of Palestinian human rights at the moment when Palestinian support groups have come under fierce attack from pro-Israel lobbyists and how people like Jonathan Cook and Asa Winstanley can help address these issues.

In the UK, Asa Winstanley’s reports about the Labour party have shown how pro-Israeli groups led a sustained assault on Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership and supporters.

Jonathan Cook’s books, reports and articles have continually challenged Israeli propaganda, exposing the long cover-up of ethnic cleansing and erasure of Palestinian history. His reports won him the Martha Gellhorn Special Prize for Journalism in 2011, with the judge’s citation describing him as “one of the reliable truth-tellers of the Middle East”.

To register for the meeting and for more information visit www.hastingspalestinecampaign.org/israel-lobby-jonathan-cook-asa-winstanley.html


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